Serving the best available seafood since 1952.
More than one hundred years ago, whaling was considered an important industry in our area. Portugese whalers helped develop Monterey as the center of the whaling industry during the late 1800's. Today, a landmark of this special part of our past is the Old Whaling Station on Decatur Street, which is now part of the Heritage Harbor, adjacent to Fisherman's Wharf. Today, whaling lives on, but instead of slaughtering these beautiful creatures, we cruise out into Monterey Bay to watch them and marvel at their grace and power during their annual migrations.
In the early 1900's, Monterey also gained another unique title, as the "Sardine Capital of the World," when sardines were caught in our Bay in such quantities that the supply was thought to be unlimited. In Monterey's early days, sardines could actually be scooped up in a person's hands, or with a basket, by anyone who went to the beaches and waded a few feet into the water. In time, a tremendous fishing and canning industry grew, and canned sardines were shipped all over the world. Thus, Fisherman's Wharf was the home of one of the world's largest sardine fishing fleets.
However, immediately following World War II, the catch of sardines slacked off. The sardines were no longer present in huge quantities and canners then began to import fresh sardines from other California ports and canned them at Monterey. Thus, "Cannery Row" kept busy even though sardines practically disappeared from the area. When the sardines were gone, fishing families had a difficult time. The lucky ones found shore jobs, but many moved away.
Rappas Restaurant has been a fixture on Monterey's historic Fisherman's Wharf since 1980, and we welcome you!